Bansko has a lot to offer besides skiing, especially on the cultural side. Visiting the old town, home to one of Bulgaria’s oldest churches, is a worthwhile outing in itself. There are also geothermal springs nearby, guided mountain walks on snowshoes and horse riding.
It also has a lively après scene, with some excellently named venues. Its biggest bar is Happy End, which has DJs and live music as well as a restaurant. Sing Sing piano bar has more of a relaxed vibe, the kind of place to kick back with a cocktail after a hard day on the slopes. There’s a wide range of restaurants serving everything from sushi to hearty Bulgarian favourites such as Kapama, a slow cooked dish made with several cuts of meat and pickled cabbage.